Police Track Fast Lane Transponders To Catch Serial ATM Robbery Suspects

By Kathy Curran, WBZ-TV

STOUGHTON (CBS) – A masked man was drilling his way to cash by hitting ATMs in convenience stores and gas stations all across the state, pulling off the heists in less than two minutes.

Stoughton Police Detective Sgt. Bob Welch said, “Quick wasn’t the word. From the time he entered the store it was less than two minutes. From the time the front door of the store was drilled and he drilled the ATM and money was taken it was one minute, 50 seconds.”

WBZ-TV’s Jonathan Elias reports

Police say 20-year-old Thomas Coyne is the man behind the mask and 23-year-old Daniel Runyan is his partner in crime. Drills and hammers are some of the tools of their alleged illegal trade.

Welch said they worked in certain weather conditions, they preferred hard weather like snowstorms when there was no traffic around. They’d conduct surveillance of the places, make entries by drilling through doors and once inside, they’d drill through the ATMs.

The two men are accused of breaking into more than 30 stores in six different counties.

Many of the break-ins this past winter were caught on tape. The jeep the suspects were driving was spotted on surveillance.

WBZ-TV’s Kathy Curran reports

The break in the case came when police made a realization that all of the targets were close to the highway, like the Cumberland Farms right off Route 24 in Stoughton.

“Once the suspect left the scene, he’d be picked up on a major highway within minutes,” said Welch.

Detectives began tracking Fast Lane transponders and found that very Jeep hopping on and off the highway near the cities and towns that were hit.

Stoughton Police Chief Paul Shastany said, “The rest was dogged police work. It’s amazing how one little slice of information broke it open.”

Police from Middlesex, Norfolk, Essex, Hampden, Plymouth and Worcester Counties formed a task force to break the case. Good police work, surveillance cameras and a transponder finally put an end to the drilling and the alleged thieves’ three-month-run.

Police say they found tens of thousands of dollars in cash and several drills and tools in one of the suspects’ homes. Coyne and Runyan have been indicted on multiple charges in Middlesex and Norfolk Counties. More charges are expected in the case.


One Comment

  1. Joe says:

    Pretty sure when they came out with the Fast Lane transponders, the state said that they would be used for toll collection only and never to track the movement of citizens. Don’t mind the fact that they caught these fellows, but it’s disturbing to me that they’re tracking Fast Lane transponders nowhere near a toll road.

    1. bill says:

      so thats how we should do or not do it…great report…note to selves, use the slow lane lol….another big brother watchin …f$&^ the patriot act and all the bullshot politician liars

    2. Jamie says:

      why can no one understand that the police saw a jeep in a break in video, then checked toll rd logs of jeeps registered with fast track and then compaired that to the time around the break ins with jeeps getting on and off at exits?
      (remember when you get a transponder you have to register it to the vehicle you are using it in)

      toll rds are MAJOR HIGHWAYS.

      it didnt say anything about them just traveling normal non toll highways.
      I guess its just more conspiracy nut b.s though and it wont matter what anyone says.

  2. OutlawJosieWales says:

    The transponder comes in a bag that prevents/blocks the signal for going out. Guess who will be putting their transponder back the the bag when it’s not being used? Big Brother is watching all of us and Papa Deval is looking to make sure we pay more so the illegal immigrants can be fed, housed, educated and given medical care.

  3. Wizard says:

    Jeepers Creepers!!!

  4. mikey says:

    Com on people, there’s nothing different in this than police looking at stores and gas stations near a crime to see who used a credit card in the area during a specific time.

    What, you think they can track the transponders? They fail sometimes just going through the toll booths!

    Worry about your Apple iPhone if you want to get scared about big brother. Or gmail that actually scans your mail for keywords, and targets ads based on what it reads. (Try this… You and a friend start sending emails back and forth about photography, and suddenly you will get ads about it. Or mention tires. Or TVs…)

  5. jaygee says:

    The money they stole, the damage to property they caused and now they are caught. Now we can wait and see what the punishment will be after their lawyers put them in a suit & tie, inform all that they were abused & neglected as a child & were never truly loved. If they do a couple of years, I’ll be very surprised.

    1. aldfadflk says:

      Daniel Runyan comes from a very loving home actually and is truly loved.

  6. Ed Hall says:

    This is why I would NEVER get a fast-lane transponder. I’ve been saying for years that the police could use them to track your movements. Allowing the State Police to install a transmitter in your car (yes, a transponder is a transmitter) is an incredibly stupid thing to do!

  7. mikey says:

    You REALLY think they can track you by the FastLane transponders?? Other than at the entry/exit ramps to the pike or to the parking garages?? I have some really great swampland for sale in Florida!!

    Yes, it’s a transponder. Yes, transponders are transmitters. Yes, the COULD build an infrastructure to do nasty things, but it just plain ain’t gonna happen.

    I put this on the level of the no-nothings that think that your ePassport can be tracked and even be targeted by terrorist as you walk down city streets! And yes, I HAVE seen the FAKE demos on YouTube…

  8. Betty says:

    Unless you’re doing something shady or going places where you shouldn’t be, then who cares if they can track you through your Fast Lane transponder? If they really want to track me to find out my route between home, work, the grocery store, etc., then let them. The joke is on them, because they’re going to be bored out of their minds.
    Also, I feel like SOME of the people complaining about the government violating their privacy are the same people who post on Twitter and Facebook everywhere they’re going and everything they’re doing anyway.

    1. Chris says:

      I can’t stand this argument. If you have nothing to hide, why not install a 1984-style telescreen in your house for the government to monitor you with?

      And since when is being shady against the law? I pride myself on being a shady individual.

    2. shiambah says:

      You’re a fool to think this way. If you were living in Germany during the 1930’s, you probably wouldn’t mind letting the Nazi’s monitor your every move. You need to become more knowledgable about the rights of Americans.

  9. marc says:

    haha this is hilarious i knew tom coyne growing up and everypne who knew him keeps sayin they are surprised it took this long for him to get arrested. he was wicked smart and actually not a bad kid. in all honesty he was too smart for his own good haha tommy coyne is a legend

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More From CBS Boston

Download Our App
Download Weather App

Listen Live